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Our Blog: Health and Nutrition
April 23, 2014
Video about health work in the Andes
"We have seen changes in health, improved order in the houses and we have seen women take greater leadership roles 
in their communities.- Community Health Promoter (qhali) with DESEA Peru

Over the past six months, Vibrant Village Foundation has partnered with DESEA Peru, a Peruvian NGO working to improve health of the Quechua people in the Andes mountains, in villages 13,000 feet above sea level. 

With our grant support, DESEA Peru is working in the communities of Microcuenca, Ccarampa and Chayna to engage local residents in health trainings and screenings, install bio-sand filters and provide community water, sanitation and hygiene infrastructure projects. 

In the last three months the team has distributed 58 bio-sand filters, provided health services to over 200 people and trained community health workers, or qhalis as they are known in the region as, to provide community health outreach in this extremely remote region of South America.

See DESEA Peru's video of their great work.

June 18, 2013
Baseline study completed in Haiti
In May we completed a baseline study. This was a door-to-door socio-economic survey of all 698 households in Phaeton and Paulette. We hired and trained 10 local surveyors to carry out the study and coached them throughout the two-week process.  
We now have solid demographic data, including information about household economic activities – what people are doing to scrape by (a lot!); key health issues; the number of kids who are in school; the number of meals people are eating each day and how many of them are getting meals from our feeding program, etc.
A few points we found interesting:
The overall average monthly income is 1,499 Haitian gourdes, or US$35. This is an important starting point as we begin to work with community members on income generating initiatives. 
Here’s a table summarizing the current make-up of household activities.
The information collected in the survey complements and substantiates what we’ve been learning the past six months in our work with villagers to develop a strategic plan for the future.  As those plans and community dreams turn to concrete action, we will use this data to measure our progress.  
Looking back in a few years’ time, we will know in very real terms that families are earning more income; that people are eating more food with improved nutrition; that more kids are in school; that more people have access to clean water; that more goats, cows and chickens are helping provide food and livelihoods; that more women are getting the care they need during their pregnancy; and that their kids are getting the nutrition and medical care they need to thrive.  
We’re excited about the future of these two communities and we have eager and motivated community leaders ready to work with us. 
February 26, 2013
Microloans, pastries & her children's education
Gertrude Bernardin is a courageous young woman living in Cap Haitien, in northern Haiti. Growing up in a working class family, her mother sold produce on the market and her father was in the military.
She is a mom to two teenage boys, both of whom are now in secondary school. She went to secondary school but did not graduate. It was then that she decided to become a pastry chef, because she really loves to cook.
Several months ago, some neighbors invited her to take part in a FINCA ‘village bank.’ She accepted their offer and received her first loan soon after.  She has managed that loan successfully, and now is on her fourth loan from FINCA, for 10,000 gourdes or $238. She feels great with the other members of her lending group, and is really proud to be a member of FINCA. She feels she is learning a lot from her loan officer and thinks it is good for her both financially and socially, to belong to this village bank.
Gertrude regularly purchases flour, sugar, milk and eggs to make pastries that she sells on the streets and in public markets. She also sells to private supermarkets who request her pastries every day. Her business has recently begun to gain more notoriety, and occasionally she receives special requests from clients to cater events or weddings.
Gertrude is a single mother and the sole provider for her small household of herself and her two sons (14 and 17 years old). The elder son is completing his senior year this year, and hopes to study to be a doctor. Gertrude hopes with all of her heart that she will be able to pay for his education. The younger son wants to be an engineer. Thanks to FINCA’s loans, she hopes her business will continue to grow so she can realize her dreams for her sons.